Home > Features > GM Defense ~ Another Potential UK GSUP Contender?

GM Defense ~ Another Potential UK GSUP Contender?

GM Defense LUV or Light Utility Vehicle [© GM Defense:Steve Fecht]

GM Defence, the reborn in 2017 military subsidiary of General Motors, is a fifth potential UK GSUP (General Service Utility Platform) contender, writes Bob Morrison.

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The original GM Defense division of General Motors was founded in the middle of the 20th Century and sold off to General Dynamics, its partner on the Stryker LAV, at the start of the 21st Century but in late 2017 the American automobile manufacturer announced they were re-entering the military utility vehicle and truck market as GM Defense LLC.

GM Defense LUV or Light Utility Vehicle [© GM Defense:Steve Fecht]

In June 2020 the company was selected to produce the US Army ISV (Infantry Squad Vehicle) based on the General Motors Chevrolet Colorado ZR2 mid-size civilian pick-up truck, which last week gained Approval for full rate production to commence from the US DoD.

Five variants of the GM Defense ISV or Infantry Squad Vehicle family [© GM Defense: Vincent Knakal]

In addition to the Colorado-based ISV family of vehicles, which includes a heavy weapons carrier variant that roughly compares to the nearly 25 year old UK Forces Land Rover Defender WMIK, earmarked for replacement in the not too distant future, GM Defence also offers a more conventional pick-up truck militarised version of the Chevrolet Silverado. Designated as the GM Defence Light Utility Vehicle or LUV, this double cab truck with open cargo bed, revealed in mid-2022, has been proposed for a Canadian Armed Forces requirement and would appear to meet the outline UK GSUP General Support and Fitted for Radio categories; an Ambulance conversion on this base vehicle would probably also be feasible.

In addition to its LUV truck prototype, GM Defense has also produced military prototypes on the larger Chevrolet Silverado full-size pick-up truck chassis, including the hybrid-electric Next Generation Light Tactical Wheeled Vehicle or NGLTWV displayed at IDEX 2023 in Abu Dhabi and the 6.2-litre Chevy Off-Road Concept Vehicle displayed at Eurosatory 2022 in Paris. The company has also been developing all-electric vehicles (EV) to meet future US Army requirements plus the in-production General Motors (GMC) Hummer EV pick-up truck could possibly be adapted to meet future UK military ‘white fleet’ requirements.

GM Defense Chevy Off-Road Concept Vehicle at Eurosatory 2023 [© Bob Morrison]

At present GM Defense are, unsurprisingly, playing their cards close to their chest about precisely what they are likely to propose for potential future military tender submissions for the east side of the Atlantic, but the fact that they announced the creation of GM Defense International at Eurosatory 2022 and also had a major presence at this major European defence expo and at IDEX 2023 in Abu Dhabi is a good indication that they are seriously chasing future projects. They have also teamed with Rheinmetall to compete for the US Army’s Common Tactical Truck or CTT requirement and were one of the bidders selected this January to produce Phase One prototypes.

[images © Bob Morrison unless noted]

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